Following Julia Gillard’s visit to Kolbe Catholic College last week, year 12 captains GIOVANNI SPISSU and HAYLEY WHEATLEY share their experience of meeting the Prime Minister with the Telegraph.
As leaders of the Kolbe Catholic College community, we always knew leadership would reward us with amazing opportunities, but we never imagined that one day we would meet our nation’s leader.
Only hours before Ms Gillard’s arrival, all the college’s student leaders were called to a meeting and informed of the visit.
We were asked to prepare questions we would ask at a formal Q & A session.
A short time later, we got the exciting and unbelievable news that we, as College captains, would be personally welcoming the Prime Minister.
The level of excitement at the College accelerated quickly once the security team and journalists started arriving to make preparations, and the news spread like wildfire.
As Ms Gillard’s car arrived, the cameras began to flash behind us, and the reality of what was happening hit home.
A moment later, we were offering words of welcome to Ms Gillard.
While many students were involved in the day, our role was to guide Ms Gillard around the school and show her school life in action.
At one point, we turned to leave a classroom and were faced with a wall of cameras and lights, and were shocked by the intensity of the situation.
As leaders, we were astounded by Ms Gillard’s control over an intimidating situation and how composed she was.
We learnt leadership can be daunting at times, but with practice, confidence becomes second nature.
While the Prime Minister was focused and in control, she was friendly and generous at drawing people into conversation.
Kolbe Catholic College will never forget this momentous occasion or the kind words Ms Gillard said about our college, both during and after her visit.